Cutting Business Costs with a Job Analysis

Recently stories abound that tell of the unfortunate end of tens, hundreds and thousands of jobs. Terms like, “layoffs” and “restructuring” frighten the most confident executive and the most senior worker. Minimizing the need for losing staff requires hiring and placing human capital in the most mutually advantageous positions from the start. Leadership can maximize company effectiveness and minimize financial waste through over-staffing or under-utilization and can avoid the dreaded day of the proverbial pink slip.

How a job analysis saves you money

The business competing in today’s global economy cannot afford to employ staff that are not effectively trained or positioned. When starting a business, many entrepreneurs hire friends, family or use volunteers to survive. While that is certainly one way to minimize costs, if the person is not trained or able to produce what the position needs the money potentially saved has been spent.

Completing a job analysis before the hiring process begins can aid the manager or leader by identifying and understanding the requirements of the position being filled. A grasp of the type of personality, educational requirements and work experience that would create the ideal candidate will help narrow the applicant field and can minimize the chances of deadwood on staff.

How a job analysis increases efficiency

The job analysis can create defined boundaries for the type and amount of work that is required. It can differentiate the functions of the position or work within the business or job family and will provide a common language for use when communicating about the work and associated responsibilities. This means that when someone wants to talk about the outcomes of the work, everyone in the company knows who was responsible and why.

Job analyses also provide legal compliance with EEOC and ADA requirements, and help in orientation, training and evaluation. Managers and supervisors can clearly evaluate the expectations against the results when planning, looking at compensation or completing performance evaluations.

How to perform a job analysis

There are a variety of ways to conduct a proper job analysis. However, minimally, the manager or leader should collect information on and identify:

  • Tasks and Duties; including frequency, duration, skill and standards
  • Environment; this is especially significant if the work environment may be unpleasant such as extreme temperatures or risks to the worker
  • Equipment and Tools; this should include any specific equipment necessary, protective clothing, hardware requirements or software requirements
  • Relationships; specify how the work and position are related to other positions and work within the company including supervisors and managers, internal and external
  • Requirements; this is typically referred to as KSAs – knowledge, skills and abilities that are minimally necessary to effectively perform the work